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News & Announcements

News and Annoucements

In an impressive display of literacy prowess, North Polk Middle School clinched the ReadBowl State Championship in Iowa. Ms. Seligman's Classes emerged victorious, reading a staggering total of 11,021 minutes during the month-long competition. 

Three photos of students reading during the ReadBowl Competition hosted in the Lit classes at North Polk Middle School.

In an impressive display of literacy prowess, North Polk Middle School clinched the ReadBowl State Championship in Iowa. Ms. Seligman's Classes emerged victorious, reading a staggering total of 11,021 minutes during the month-long competition. 

 

In an impressive display of literacy prowess, North Polk Middle School clinched the ReadBowl State Championship in Iowa. Ms. Seligman's Classes emerged victorious, reading a staggering total of 11,021 minutes during the month-long competition.

This year's award holds special significance, given the record-breaking participation of 280,000 students. The North Polk team's achievement signifies their unrivaled dedication to reading, outshining all other middle school teams in the state.

READBowl, a global reading competition for PK-8th grade teams, involves a spirited contest to accrue the most reading minutes. The competition kicks off on the day of the American College Football National Championship and concludes with the announcement of the World Champions of Reading on the morning of the National Football League's Super Bowl Sunday.

North Polk Middle School participated in the Middle Conference, encompassing grades 6-8, and demonstrated outstanding commitment to reading. Throughout the competition, students received motivational messages from NFL players, ESPN anchors, and even authors. The initiative was spearheaded by Mitchell Malcolm, a former New England Patriots player and the founder of the "Share the Magic Foundation" and READ Bowl.

All 20 literacy sections at North Polk Middle School took part in the competition, with notable achievements in reading minutes recorded by each class. The top three are as follows:

  • Larson's 3rd & 4th Hour - Average of 2005.74 minutes

  • Seligman's 1st & 2nd Hour - Average of 1871.05 minutes

  • Bouzek's 5th & 6th Hour - Average of 1760.45 minutes

The collective effort of the school resulted in an impressive total average of 22,483.28 minutes over four weeks.

To recognize individual achievements, the top ten readers were rewarded with free Kona Ice for the month.

1. Gabryel Rudloff 11,021 Minutes (8th Grade)

2. Nick Eveland 10,320 Minutes (8th Grade)

3. Mallory Byrd 7,915 Minutes (8th Grade)

4. Josie Rosenbalm 7,915 Minutes (8th Grade)

5. Addy Baker 7, 358 Minutes (8th Grade)

6. Charlotte Stork 7,165 Minutes (6th Grade)

7. Natalie Reha 6,719 Minutes (6th Grade)

8. Dawson Shipley 6,327 Minutes (6th Grade)

9. Evelyn Wildin 6,228 Minutes (7th Grade)

10. Aylse Baker 5,962 Minutes (6th Grade

A special shoutout goes to Mrs. Sarah Seligman, whose unwavering dedication and organizational skills were instrumental in driving the success of this inspiring reading initiative at North Polk Middle School. Congrats to the champions of reading!

NPGBB ends the 2023-2024 Season as State Semifinalists. Learn more about their tournament run here.

A team photo of North Polk Girls Basketball

For the seventh time in the program's history and the fifth in the last seven seasons, the North Polk Girls Basketball team found themselves back in the Iowa Girls Basketball State Tournament. The Comets entered the tournament as the #5 seed with a remarkable 22-2 record, fueled by a desire to avenge last year's heart-wrenching loss in the State Championship Game.

In their quarterfinal matchup against the #4 seed, Dallas Center-Grimes, the Comets found themselves in a hard-fought battle. After a back-and-forth game, the Comets emerged victorious with a 48-42 win. The second-half surge, outscoring the Mustangs by 14 points, propelled them to the next round.

The win against DCG aligned another matchup from the 2023 State Tournament, with this matchup coming against the Clear Creek- Amana Clippers who brought an undefeated record into the tournament and were the #1 seed. The Comets were the last team to take down the Clippers, defeating them in the 2023 State Quarterfinals 61-30. 

The Comets held a slight advantage heading into the break with a score of 28-26. Despite the Clippers' early success in the second half, scoring the first 10 points, the Comets remained resilient. In the fourth quarter, they faced their largest deficit, trailing by 11. However, a remarkable effort, highlighted by a pivotal five-point possession led by freshman Fayth Sullivan, brought them back into contention.

Ultimately, the Comets fell just short in the semifinals with a final score of 50-48. Concluding the season as 4A State Semi-finalists, the North Polk Girls Basketball team wraps up an impressive campaign with a 23-3 record.

North Polk Wrestling Sends 7 to the State Tournament.

State wrestlers

Another milestone – another school record for the Comets. 

It was a big weekend for Comet Wrestling. Congratulations to our 7 Comet Wrestlers who qualified for the Iowa State Wrestling Tournament over the weekend! The tournament journey begins for the Comets on Wednesday, Feb 14, at 9 am at Wells Fargo Arena. Congratulations to the Comets for setting a remarkable new school record!

State Qualifiers:

  • Charlie Boelman 106
  • Jacob Moeckly 126
  • Cole Halupnick 150
  • Cohan Torres 175
  • Ben Bryant 190
  • Reece Wrage 215
  • Tucker Anderson 285

Members of our District Leadership Team and School Board visited the Iowa Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 13 for the annual Iowa School Board Association’s “Day on the Hill”. We are committed to standing up for public education and ensuring ongoing support for ALL North Polk students.

See a brief overview of our legislative priorities for the upcoming session here.

Members of our District Leadership Team and School Board visited the Iowa Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 13 for the annual Iowa School Board Association’s “Day on the Hill”. We are committed to standing up for public education and ensuring ongoing support for ALL North Polk students.

See a brief overview of our legislative priorities for the upcoming session below.

Increase in SSA

  • Inflation Impact: We urgently call for a 4% or higher Supplemental State Aid (SSA) increase to counter inflation's substantial impact on our school district's operational costs.
     

  • Budget Pressures: We urge the necessary SSA increase to address rising expenses, including elevated gas prices, increased utility costs, and soaring insurance premiums, crucial for alleviating budget pressures in our school district.

Safety

  • Explore and advocate for alternative funding sources to supplement Supplemental State Aid, specifically earmarked for additional School Resource Officers and enhanced safety measures.
     

  • Ensure a sustainable and reliable financial foundation to support ongoing and proactive safety initiatives within educational institutions.

Mental Health Supports

  • Advocate for dedicated funding within Supplemental State Aid to bolster mental health services in schools.
     

  • Prioritize resources for hiring mental health professionals, providing training, and implementing programs that foster a supportive and resilient school environment.

North Polk CSD celebrates the successful completion of the Scanlan School of Mental Health Training Paraeducator Fellowship, recognizing the efforts of individuals and securing $21K for an action plan aimed at empowering paraeducators and advancing the mission of Learning for All.

 

A group photo of three paraeducators.

"Learning for All by Learning From All" echoes throughout the North Polk Campus, underscoring a commitment that extends beyond students to encompass everyone involved—students, staff, the community, parents, families, and stakeholders alike. The North Polk CSD proudly announces the successful completion of the Scanlan School of Mental Health Training Paraeducator Fellowship.

Special recognition goes to Julie Krehbiel, Julie Rasmussen, and Jenny Schmidt for their dedicated efforts in advancing their learning and leadership through this rigorous training. The fellowship included three in-person Imagine Iowa training blocks, complemented by enrollment in a digital platform for additional content, activities, and coaching to meet licensure credit requirements (15 hours in total equating to 1 licensure credit). The in-person training unfolded in Des Moines over the last three months.

Matthew Blackmore, Director of Student Services at North Polk CSD, expressed, "I have had the pleasure to meet with and discuss with Julie, Jenny, and Julie on the next steps for growing and enhancing our Paraeducators' learning and experience in the future."

“As a collaborative Lead Paraeducator team, an action plan is in the works for this semester, set to take effect in the next school year. This plan aims to develop the skills and attributes of successful team members through a curated curriculum, technology integration, and professional training.”

The completion of this fellowship has not only enhanced the skills of our North Polk CSD team but has also garnered $21K in support of the action plan, empowering paraeducators to facilitate high-level learning for all students.

Looking ahead, the Lead Paraeducators, including Amber Houser and Kathy Hron, will convene monthly in Spring 2024 to author, create, and implement the action plan for the school year 2024-2025.

Thank you to our Lead Paraeducators, this endeavor exemplifies their vision and determination to advance the mission of Learning for ALL, by Learning from ALL.